UNI Global Union is urging world leaders, employers and unions meeting at the International Labour Conference in Geneva to seize the day and create systemic change for women by adopting a convention to end violence and sexual harassment in the workplace.
UNI Global Union General Secretary, Christy Hoffman said, “One in three women have been victims of sexual harassment. As usual it’s the poorest workers who are the most vulnerable but these numbers include women from all walks of life. An ILO Convention does not on its own solve the problem – there is far ranging responsibility, including among enterprises and governments. We must adopt a firm global rule to guide our future and send the message, loud and clear, that this conduct will not be tolerated. From cleaners and retail workers to Google engineers – all female workers have the human right to be free from violence and sexual harassment.”
UNI’s Head of Equal Opportunities, Veronica Fernandez Mendez, leading a UNI delegation at the International Labour Conference, is determined to ensure that a strongly worded convention is adopted and can become an important tool in ensuring violence and sexual harassment are relegated to the past.
Fernandez Mendez said, “This is a significant moment in the battle for justice and equality for women. As well as the adoption of the convention, women from across Switzerland this Friday June 14th, supported by many men, will strike for equal pay, equality and the right to live free from violence both in the home and in the workplace. We cannot tolerate a society where such abhorrent acts take place every few seconds across the world.”
UNI Deputy General Secretary, Alke Boessiger added, “Violence and harassment in the world of work is a global problem, requiring global solutions. No one should go to work in fear of experiencing violence and harassment. UNI’s 20 million strong family fully supports the demand for the adoption of the convention. We call for action now not tomorrow.”
Follow the countdown to the Swiss Women’s Strike and the latest on the convention via UNI’s social media platforms.